MAHOPAC, N.Y. - This wasn’t the start the Mahopac boys lacrosse team had in mind.

The Indians found themselves in an early 3–0 hole in last Saturday’s March 23 spring debut against Byram Hills, and were unable to recover in a 7-3 loss that head coach Joe Bucello called unacceptable.

“This was one of our worst losses,” Bucello said. “Byram Hills is a good program, and they played well, but we’re a Class A school with championship background, and we shouldn’t lose to a program that hasn’t done that yet. It’s not acceptable in my eyes, and it’s not acceptable for fans of the program. That’s not what Mahopac lacrosse is about.”

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Mahopac decided to change up its pre-game routine, going back into the school locker room after its initial warmup, and then returning for the start of the game.

The team seem fired up. But the Bobcats were, too, and came out and put a quick three spot on the Indians - victimizing the Mahopac defense for three game-changing goals in the first six minutes.

And the ’Pac offense never got into a flow, managing just three goals all game.

“We came out flat,” Bucello said. “And they put three in fast. It was a deficit we couldn’t come back from. They have one of the best goalies in the Section, and he can play. With a three-goal lead, they can rest on it, and they did. They have a good defense.”

Bucello said changes in the team’s pregame routine, and a few things he tried in the game, could have been a factor. 

“I’ll take the blame,” he said. “I tried some different things offensively, and with our warmup, and they didn’t work out. So we’ll change that.”

Freshman attacker Mike Harney led the Indians with two goals, Anthony Corrado had a goal and one assist, and keeper Mike Argila had 13 saves in net.

“Ian Hamilton, a junior defender, played well for us,” Bucello said. “And Mike Harney —with two goals—had a nice game. That was no surprise, he’ll be a player for us for years.”

The road doesn’t get any easier for Mahopac, which was scheduled to host (defending Sectional champ) Mamaroneck (yesterday, March 27. The Indians also host Putnam Valley this Saturday at 1 p.m.